Neighbours object to subdivision plan in Red Deer County

A controversial plan to subdivide a farmsite just southeast of Red Deer has been rejected by county council.

A controversial plan to subdivide a farmsite just southeast of Red Deer has been rejected by county council.

Peter and Dorothy Hansum wanted to create a new 21.9-acre parcel containing the stables of a horse boarding business so it could be sold. The remaining 73.5 acres of farmland could be sold as farmland to another producer.

However, the plan ran into much neighbourhood opposition. Some Springvale Heights residents feared the subdivision could lead to future subdivision into country residential lots, which would have created traffic, loss of privacy and noise issues.

John Hansum, Peter and Dorothy’s son, told council there was no intention of creating a multi-lot subdivision.

“Nothing can be further from the truth,” he said.

His aging parents wanted to subdivide out the long-running horse stable business to sell it. It would remain zoned agricultural, as would the remaining land.

Council also heard that their had been hard feelings between the Hansums and neighbours of an easement used to access farm fields, which runs between two of the Springvale Heights lots.

Another access point on Springvale Drive was proposed but it is at a steep hill slope, said planners.

Planning staff recommended council deny the application because it did not meet the Municipal Development Plan’s goal of limiting fragmentation of agriculture land.

Coun. Jean Bota said there were many concerns voiced about the subdivision application and she had a “serious issue” with the second proposed access point.

“I can’t support this.”

Coun. Christine Moore also agreed there were too many valid concerns raised and the subdivision application was not for the good of all.

Mayor Jim Wood said with the easement issue already a bone of contention in the area, approving further subdivision might only make matters worse. If there had been a better alternate access proposed, the subdivision may have been a better fit.

Council voted unanimously against the application.

pcowley@bprda.wpengine.com